A New Day, A New Direction
I remember the mall growing up. It was an entire afternoon or day activity. Then came changes in the culture. Arts, cities, e-commerce, social media, and YouTube, but the malls’ owners didn’t change. The stores in them might have changed, but their business plans remained the same. They held on to their golden handcuffs, thinking it would be ok. We would return to what made them successful. We never did.
Sure, people still need to buy things, but they do not have to go to stores. Now, most chains are holding on for dear life with the debt they have negotiated. They are placing all their eggs in the same basket, hoping to get cash from the same banks that gave them cash before to create roughly the same business models. It’s the endless shake hands, wink wink, backroom negotiations that have made it impossible for change. It is patriarchal, which makes this behavior even more unattractive. Enough already.
What comes next? When we are all vaccinated and receive our get out of jail free card, what will happen? Will the economy take off? What will the street-fronts of retail look like? What will malls become that have been empty for over a year with empty stores that have chosen to walk away from their leases? We are not going back.
Technology has pushed us forward, but a large part of this country is still living in the boom of the years past. Our infrastructure is shit. Our cities haven’t changed as they have overseas. Our needs and the way we live our lives have changed, but the infrastructure around us is old and creaky.
Please, Joe. Restucture our country. Move us into the future. Put money into education and infrastructure, deal with our foreign policy thru laws and deals, not more nuclear weapons. Take care of those who have been ignored for so long with the best public housing and amazing social programs. Support the arts. Change our jail system. Trickle-down doesn’t work. Let’s all move forward. Show the world that we care about all of our people and we are cutting edge. It’s better for our country and it will be better for the world.